Thursday, May 31, 2007

Latte Art

Those of you who know me know that I'm a little nuts about coffee. I'm crazy for lattes in particular. Last week I had the pleasure of sipping my favorite beverage at Caffe Artigiano downtown Vancouver. At Artigiano's the baristas are artists. A coffee isn't simply poured it is exactingly and exquistly created. And no matter how badly I want to drink my latte, it always takes me a few minutes to get up the nerve. If I sip it gently, the creation may keep most of its shape until near the end. Eventually though, it all ends up in my stomach. Yum.

Writing is like that. Someone takes the time, months or even years, to put together a novel and readers devour it. I like to think some readers take the time to savor my words but, hey, if they wolf it down that's okay too.

Dont Quote Me...

I'm over at Muse, News...and a Few Loose Screws today talking about my favorite quotes. C'mon over and visit :)

Monday, May 28, 2007

Curious Cat Meme

#1 What is your favorite "pig-out" food? For me it's Nachos. All the way.

#2 Of all the airports you've been in, which one would be the best one in which to be stuck for 12-15 hours? My own, Vancouver International. Great shopping and sushi!

#3 If you were in a "Noah" situation, which animals would you take with you? Which would you leave behind? Dogs, Cats and Horses would definitely have to come along. Rats and mosquitos would be left to fend for themselves.

#4 Think back to your childhood. What was something you were looking forward to doing/being as an adult? Have you done/been it? Yes, I became a writer! Other than that I wished for later curfews. Now that I can stay up late, I'm usually too tired.

#5 Which one entertainer would you like to have attend your funeral? Hmmm. Bono and I'd like him to sing.

Go ahead and post your answers in the comments section. I'm also going to tag my good friend Jana DeLeon. She travels a lot so I can't wait to read her answer to number two! And I'll tag Colleen Gleason because I'm curious about her answer to # 1 since she shares my love for Mexican food.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Stuck in the Middle with Muse

I've got those
stuck in the
middle with

And they've struck earlier this time.

Usually right around page 200 I get the blah blah blah's. When I feel like every time my protagonist speaks her dialogue is blah blah blah. Or every scene I write feels like I've written myself into a corner.

When this happens, I usually give myself a break or go and collage my next story but I'm only at page 125. Page 125 doesn't deserve a collaging break. But page 125 is making me feel a lot like that rock climber in the picture. I've got a long way to go and a long way to fall.

So do the blah blah blues ever strike you? How do you handle it?

Monday, May 21, 2007

The Joy of Children

This is a long weekend here in Canada because today is Victoria Day. Also, the school deemed it necessary to add on another day to their holiday so the kids will be home tomorrow as well. I have four kids but the thing about having four kids is that they always multiply. Even when one is traded to go and play with a friend, two more neighbor kids will wonder over to replace the one that's gone.

I love having kids. Really. Well, most of the time. But since my kids have all been in school I've revelled in the joy of writing with at least a few hours a day of quiet. This weekend my muse has been vying for my attention big time. There's a scene playing over and over in my head and I can't wait to write it but my kids just won't leave me alone. Instead of writing this weekend I've:

Participated in the Cloverdale Rodeo Parade
Sat through a 3 hour dance recital
Screamed through hour upon hour of a baseball tournament
Prepared 9 meals, 6 snacks and washed 11 loads of laundry.

In addition to all of that, my teen daughter just got braces on Thursday. Now I've never had braces but apparently it's quite painful. For all of us.

So if you're run off your feet busy these days or if your kids are driving you crazy, please share your secrets for sanity. If you're relaxing at a spa somewhere, just keep that to yourself. Don't make me hurt you.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Weird or Wonderful?

Have you ever considered using your loved one's remains to make jewellery?

I'm blogging about it today over at Muse, News...and a Few Loose Screws.

Come and discuss!

Monday, May 14, 2007

What are you saving it for?

"The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them."

Thoreau said this well over a century ago. Every time I read this quote it makes me feel simultaneously determined and sad.

Determined because I want to live my life the best damn way I know how. All of it. I don't want to be at the end wishing I'd done more.

Sad because I know a lot of people go through life being afraid to really try. I think of all those people who've come up to me at readings and signings or those who email me through my web site to say one day they want to write a book. "Do it!" I say. "Don't wait!"

You see, I think every single person should write a book. Don't get me wrong, I don't think all those people should try and publish their work. But the act of writing the story of your heart is a labor of love.

If you've got a story inside you that's waiting to get out, who are you saving it for?

Friday, May 11, 2007

The Weekend

It's the weekend to honor good ol' mom, or as my in-law's say "mum". It's a not-so-big day for me.

I always feel a little sad on Mother's Day because my own mother is in Winnipeg and that's just too far for a one-day visit. I've sent her a nice gift but it's not the same as sitting around gabbing for hours and stuffing your face together at a local buffet.

So on Mother's Day my kids will wake me up early with breakfast in bed (don't want mom to sleep the day away!). Breakfast will be toast that's only kind of toasted and soggy with too much jam and coffee so weak you can see to the bottom of the cup. I'll eat the toast and drink the coffee and enjoy it like a gourmet meal. Next, I'll read all their colored greeting cards and open all the presents bought using their precious allowance coins.

After that, my own personal Mother's Day time is pretty much over because the matriarch of the family (mother-in-law) loves to go to the horse races. Even though that's not something I enjoy doing, we've gone with my hubby's family for a dozen years so I guess it's now a tradition. At least the weather this year is supposed to be nice.

Does your family doing anything special on this not-so-big day?

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The Editing Couch

Thanks to those who emailed to ask how the editing was going. It went great but it's great to return to the real world once more.

Editing doesn't come easy for me. For some reason, the editing process can't be done in a coffee shop (like first draft) or at my computer desk (like second draft). It needs to be done in a sunny corner of my living room surrounded by:

- coffee (3 cups in this picture but I took a couple away)
- office supplies (colored post-its, gel pens & white-out)
- snacks (Okay, I hid the bag of white cheddar popcorn and others. I didn't want ya to think I was a total pig!)

With the ms now in NYC, I'll dive back into first draft of book two tomorrow. I don't need as many comforts when writing my first draft. I'll probably even bring my Dana to my son's ball game in the evening.

So tell me, do you like to have things a certain way before tackling a project?

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Shop and Make a Difference

I hate to shop but I LOVE to shop on-line. I love it even more when it supports a worthy cause.

Brenda Novak's son has diabetes. Right now Brenda is hosting her Third Annual On-Line Auction for Diabetes Research. If you
click here,
you'll go to Brenda's site where you can view the fabulous trailer for her newest book Dead Giveaway and then you can click on over to the auction. There are over 600 items to bid on so don't miss the fun!

I've got to go bury my head in copy edits for a few days but I'll definitely pop into Brenda's site from time to time to place my bids.